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Looking forward by looking back

There's still time to share your recipes! I'll draw a name after the holidays.

For now, I wanted to share that it's been a purposeful thing for me to be doing absolutely NO gift knitting in the days leading up the holidays. I wholeheartedly believe in knitted gifts, and I enjoy seeing what others are knitting for their friends and loved ones; I just made it a point to lower my expectations for myself in the belief that if it wasn't already done, it wasn't going to get done.

So with no knitting to show until December 26th, you'll have to put up with some non-knitting content.

I learned so much last month while both my mom and daughter were here at the same time -- when three generations are under one roof for a couple of weeks, there are some things you can't help but figure out about yourself.

Mom/Me/Daughter

One of the things that Erica told me was that she wants to be able to stay home with her kids (when she has them, that is -- we're not in any hurry, right?) I vividly remember the agonizing choice it was for us to decide that I would no longer work full time, but would be there for her when she got home from school every day. At the time, it was JUST her and we had no plans for other children yet. To sit across from her as a full-grown young woman, and have her tell me that she will be making the same choice -- was a gift. When I quit my job, she was almost 8 -- and I know she remembers how much I enjoyed my job and the co-workers I considered my friends. On paper, it wasn't so clear that we could AFFORD the choice, but once we made the decision, I never went back to work full-time. Since then, whenever I've considered going back to work, even though the opportunities were good ones, the time still isn't right. For now, I'm happy with my part-time position at my local yarn shop.

Now that I have the boys (who will be 10 and 8 next year), I can't imagine not being a part of their day. While my mom was here, she questioned why I go to so much trouble to drop them off and pick them up at school. This is the first year I have done this -- that I haven't taken advantage of the school bus that stops directly in front of our house. I tried to express to her that I do it because I can; because I know that I will never get this time back. When Erica graduated from high school this past May, it was probably THAT day that I realized how quickly time had passed. And frankly, it's the reason I don't knit as much as I used to. And when my mom asked why I make their lunches every morning (and I indulge the limited palate of my youngest son by fixing him the SAME THING every day), I tried to explain it as ONE tiny little thing in the big picture. We don't spoil them, but I do try to indulge them when I can.

The kicker -- each of them has delighted me this past year by confirming in some way that they appreciate my knitting. My youngest has been the most vocal about asking for handknit socks and demanding to learn how to knit (we still have an attention and attitude issue). My older son is quietly appreciative that I knit him some blue socks and he said he would like a matching hat, scarf and mittens. And Erica called and left me a voice mail last night asking that I send her a text message with the name and number of the yarn store closest to her so she can buy find yarn to knit a scarf for her dad. (Oh, I hope they're nice to her there!)

And in this photo, taken the day before she left to go back to Florida:

Erica knitting

She felll in love with the "Geranio" Malabrigo Worsted -- it was so irresistible she had to cast on and start knitting at the store

Comments

I miss picking Haydn up from school. I still sacrifice some sleep so I can be the one to drop him off. I can't quite give that up.

How lovely to have feedback from your kids that things you've done and choices you've made have been noticed and appreciated and understood!

Thank you for making me feel so very much better about my life's choices! And bless you for yours. We don't get annual reviews or raises or bonuses - but those little "ah ha" moments sure make it all worth while.

The picture of the three of you is beautiful.

Lately, I have been strugling with my work and the duties that I have at home as a Mom and housewife. Sometimes I wish I could just concentrate in being a Mom and I am sure that in itself it will keep me 100% occupied. Reading your post today, reaffirmed my desire to just be with my family--my little tykes are growing and I am sure that I am missing 50% of the things they do everyday.
Your choices have inspire me and I hope that someday I can follow the same path.

What a beautiful three generation picture.

What a wonderful post.

wonderful photos of the 3 of you.

I love the pictures of you all. It is important to me too to do that school run! I do it without fail each day even if someone else offers.

Go Erica! I love that she's knitting. I also love the b/w triptych - you're all so gorgeous.

Love the 3 generation pictures you posted. Amazing how much Erica looks like you. Lovely post.

I enjoyed reading this incredible post! In many ways, it's very inspiring.

I love those mother-daughter portraits. And I also cannot resist the Malabrigo 'Geranio'!

I love the pictures of the 3 of you, and especially that your daughter appreciates the choices you made.

Oh my goodness, you have a beautiful family!!! :)

One of the things I cherish about getting older is understanding my mother more. It's nice. Thank you for this post!

Mmh valuing family! Can't beat it!

I love how you mentioned even though it didn't look right on paper you still stepped out on faith and did it!

Yes that Malabrigo while make you an addict! LOL

I just came across a recipe this past week and had it at our company potluck. I must share b/c it is DELISH!!!

Btw- I normally don't have revipes in my back pocket since I really don't cook like that! LOL

Confirmation of right choices is a wonderful thing! I am DYING over that picture of you! I think I have one that looks about the same! LOL

Great post! One of the hardest things I ever did was quit work when son number two was born. It was also the best decision I ever made. I did not want someone else to raise my children. I know that some parents do not have that option, so I cherish those years that I was able to stay home with my children.

Love the pictures of the three of you. What lovely women you all are.

WAIT - you have GROWN daughter? Did I read that right? I have always been struck by your beauty - all of you are gorgeous in your triptych.

It's touching that you take so much care with your children. Oh would that other parents do the same, it would be a different world! It's wonderful too that they appreciate your knitting and want learn themselves. It's great to share something in common with your children. A shared interest in crafting things by hand bind me and my mother - it will be a gift that lasts forever.

Ummmmmm, hi! I can't keep up with all your posts!!! ;)

I had originally wanted to comment on this when I first read it, but I just didn't get around to it. So! I just wanted to take a second to tell you that I think that THIS is why people love your blog so much. You not only talk about the mechanics of knitting, but you also focus on the PROCESS of knitting, and what it means to you and the impact it has on your life. This was a beautiful post and a pleasure to read. It's also always fun to find out more about the blogger as a person, something I definitely shy away from on my blog. So, thanks for the subtle inspiration! :)

Happy Holidays!

p.s. I second Ava's disbelief! LOL!